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PhysX: will this setup benefit from a dedicated PhysX card?

Last response: in Graphics & Displays
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August 5, 2011 7:19:16 PM

I have a GTX 560 Ti as my GPU, and today I've acquired an XFX 8800GT 512MB from a friend. Will my PhysX games benefit from setting the 8800GT as my dedicated PhysX processor or not? If not, what card will I need to set up for PhysX to make these games benefit from such a setup?

By benefit I mean noticing a significant (5+) increase in fps or my primary GPU producing less heat.

Thanks in advance.
a c 171 Î Nvidia
August 5, 2011 7:36:59 PM

The best way to find out is to "suck it and see" mate, there are so many differing opinions on PhysX it's difficult to tell fact from fiction most of the time IMO.
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August 7, 2011 5:46:16 AM

No
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a b Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 6:09:45 AM

So as i understand it correctly you can only use the same card for physx as the one you are using at that time for the screen ( so only a 560 if you have an 560 ) Only in a SLI configuration then ? I'm not sure i'm happy with physx then, i have just one card now and i understand that physx is using capacity of the main GPU wich makes him slower ? ( i've got an 560 ti soc ) I'm puzzeled.
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a b Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 6:19:06 AM

O, just another question then. In the physx configuration screen you can choose between GPU and CPU. Is it wise to give the job to the CPU to leave more graphic power for the GPU ?
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a c 80 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 6:50:44 AM

All this depends on the situation. The only negative to using the 8800GT is that is draws more power and adds to the heat. However, most the time it does nothing for you, unless you play one of those games that can take advantage of GPU accelerated PhysX. There are about 20ish games that do. In some cases, they don't make much use of them, in others it's not done very well visually, but in some of those 20 games, it adds a whole new level of visual delight (or so I am told).

What games are you wanting to take advantage of GPU accelerated PhysX?
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 12:27:56 PM

GreenDutchAlien said:
So as i understand it correctly you can only use the same card for physx as the one you are using at that time for the screen ( so only a 560 if you have an 560 ) Only in a SLI configuration then ? I'm not sure i'm happy with physx then, i have just one card now and i understand that physx is using capacity of the main GPU wich makes him slower ? ( i've got an 560 ti soc ) I'm puzzeled.

You can use any of the cards listed together with your existing card in a non SLi configuration.
http://www.nvidia.com/object/physx_gpus.html

If you have any more questions then please start your own question thread.
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August 7, 2011 4:36:59 PM

Quote:
However, most the time it does nothing for you, unless you play one of those games that can take advantage of GPU accelerated PhysX.


I know that and I've stated so in my original question:

Quote:
Will my PhysX games benefit from setting the 8800GT as my dedicated PhysX processor or not?


Specifically, the Mass Effects, Metro 2033, Mafia 2, Dark Void, Dragon Age...

@mousemonkey: Don't be so harsh, I don't mind people asking minor questions directly related to the topic, that often helps...

Quote:
So as i understand it correctly you can only use the same card for physx as the one you are using at that time for the screen ( so only a 560 if you have an 560 ) Only in a SLI configuration then ? I'm not sure i'm happy with physx then, i have just one card now and i understand that physx is using capacity of the main GPU wich makes him slower ? ( i've got an 560 ti soc ) I'm puzzeled.


It isn't like SLI/CF. One card is the main one (560 Ti, in my case) and does everything, while the other one (8800GT) does only PhysX calculations... in your nVidia control panel, you can assign the CPU, the main GPU or another GPU (even an AMD one, as far as I'm aware) as your PhysX processor. That lifts some load from your main GPU, and I want to find out exactly how much. The cards don't have to be the same; in fact, the PhysX card usually is much weaker than the primary one - people use entry-level GPUs for that purpose.

Yeah, I've noticed that 8800GT makes a lot of noise, heats up and draws power... I'm willing to invest in an entry-level card or find a used good one if it will REALLY help me.
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a c 80 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:21:18 PM

Mass Effect is supposed to add a lot of PhysX detail, although I've heard it is over done, it will mean something.

With Metro 2033, I've played it with and without PhysX, and I can't tell a difference. From my understanding, the difference is that with it on in this game, all the calculations are done in real time. With it off, it uses precalculated routines and done well enough that I can't see a difference.

With Mafia 2, I have not played it, but I hear good things about it here.

Dark Void is supposed to use it very heavily, though I've heard the game itself isn't very good.

Dragon Age Origins/II does not use GPU accelerated PhysX. It uses a PhysX engine, but does nothing that requires or lets you use your GPU.

You have enough PhysX games that you might as well try it out and see what you think.
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:28:43 PM

amk-aka-Phantom said:

@mousemonkey: Don't be so harsh, I don't mind people asking minor questions directly related to the topic, that often helps...


OK then I've restored the other question from robjordy but please don't blame me if it leads to your thread being hijacked.
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a b Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:30:04 PM

Mousemonkey said:
You can use any of the cards listed together with your existing card in a non SLi configuration.
http://www.nvidia.com/object/physx_gpus.html

If you have any more questions then please start your own question thread.


Yeah, sorry for that, thought of that to late. :(  I did read in the terms of use you shouldn't hyjack a thread, i wouldn't like that with a thread of meself also. So i was planning on making a thread of meself about it.
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:36:12 PM

GreenDutchAlien said:
Yeah, sorry for that, thought of that to late. :(  I did read in the terms of use you shouldn't hyjack a thread, i wouldn't like that with a thread of meself also. So i was planning on making a thread of meself about it.

Thanks for that, it would be nice if there were others who were as considerate unfortunately this is not always the case hence why I sometimes have to get a bit heavy handed.
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a b Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:46:54 PM

Thanks AMK-AKA-Phantom for the support, i just read it now. It was a bit stupid ( i'm Dutch, sue me ! ) asking things in your thread but i did NOT want to hijack the thread. With all respect mousemonkey but maybe have a little bit more faith in people ? I'm pretty new at forums and stuff so a mistake is easily made. You make me sound like someone who hijacks threads all the time and that is the last thing i want to do. So ; sorry again and i won't do it again. :hello: 
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a b Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:51:34 PM

***, sorry again mousemonkey, i just read your responce after i posted mine. Forget what i just said about having faith in people please. This isn't going oke. AAAAAAHHHHH.Let's just start over again or something ; Hi mousemonkey, nice picture you have. This is the last thing i will say on this thread otherwise i AM taking it over. Oh God please help me to keep me big mouth shut until i know what i'm saying.
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a c 171 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 5:53:45 PM

[:mousemonkey]
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August 7, 2011 6:34:04 PM

Quote:
O, just another question then. In the physx configuration screen you can choose between GPU and CPU. Is it wise to give the job to the CPU to leave more graphic power for the GPU ?


I leave it on Auto... never noticed any difference. That's actually a valid question: IS there any difference? Detail-wise or heat-wise? (Wouldn't mind offloading some heat from the GPU to the CPU...) I tried it before with stock cooler, but at that time high temps prevented me from gaming more than 15 minutes, lol... I'll go enable that on Mass Effect 2 and check the difference.

@bystander: Thanks for your reply, that gives me an idea of where I should start... I don't "have" all these games, just the Mass Effects and the Dragon Ages, and Metro/Dark Void I was only planning to get later, and since Metro 2033 is rather heavy, I wanted to know if PhysX card would help. Apparently, not so much.

@mousemonkey: thanks for watching for thread hijackers, but robjordy doesn't seem to be doing that... at least, not intentionally :D 

Does any of you have any experience with PhysX yourself that you can be sure about? Before, mousemonkey said the opinions differ so much that there's nothing better than just trying it out, but it'd be nice to know what people have seen to work for them already. I know that setting a second card for PhysX isn't a very popular option on Tom's - people prefer to go for a single card or SLI/CF - but I'd really like to learn more about this and so far all I've found on the internets is arguments, opinions and no real benchmarks... The option is there, SOMEBODY has to know how and where to make use of it! ;) 
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a c 80 Î Nvidia
August 7, 2011 6:49:28 PM

I have experience with 2 GPU accelerated PhysX games. Sacred 2 and Metro 2033. I have used a dedicated physX card with an AMD card as well as Nvidia at another point.

Sacred 2 added a lot of sparkles, smoke and leaves blowing in the wind. I found while running this game I would get some stuttering from time to time with PhysX on. I did this with a dedicated 8800, 9800GT and a 470 just to see if the dedicated PhysX card was not strong enough, but it didn't matter. The reality is, the leaves looked nice with PhysX on, but I found the spells were over done and looked better without it. Given the stuttering with PhysX on, I play this one with it off.

I already explained my experience with Metro 2033. I can't see a difference, and even with a dedicated PhysX card, it loses performance with it on.

Those two aren't the best examples of GPU accelerated PhysX, I hear better stuff about Batman AA and Mafia II.
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